Monday, March 28, 2022

Oscar Awards Incident

Comedian Chris Rock was about to give award for one of the winners. As usual he was making some jovial remarks. 

The winner of this year for Best Actor Will Smith and his wife Jada Pinkett Smith were in the audience. Jada has a disease called “alopecia areata”. This disease makes her lose all her head hair. 

Award presenter Comedian Chris Rock started to make an insensitive joke about Jada. He said: 

"Jada, I love you— 'G.I. Jane 2', can't wait to see it," 

(Side bar: There was a movie in 1997 called G.I. Jane starring Demi Moore. In the movie, Demi Moore was the first woman to go through the arduous Navy Seal training. During the training, she showed more grit than her male counterparts. In an effort to solidify her status as a Navy Seal, she shaved her head and become the symbol of G.I. Jane.) 

Jada lost her hair because of this disease alopecia areata. Will Smith lost his cool when Chris Rock made fun of his wife’s disease. He went up to the stadium and slapped Chris Rock. This was witnessed live by millions of people around the world.


Now there is a debate going on in social media and news papers whether what Will Smith did was right or wrong. 

I fully support Will Smith. At least he was a nice guy and stopped with one slap. If I were in his place, I would have given Chris Rock harsher punishment. Husband should not keep quiet when a stranger publicly humiliates the wife (for her disease) in front of the world audience. 

What do you think? Was Will Smith right?

Sunday, March 27, 2022

Elon Musk

Elon Musk is quite an interesting character. 

He was born in South Africa. Lived for a while in Canada. Became a U.S. Citizen. He is only 50 years old. 

He is the CEO of Tesla Motors, the electric car company. 

Musk is also CEO of SpaceX. Founder The Boring Company. Cofounder of Neuralink and OpenAI (Artificial Intelligence). 

His net worth is more than $300 billion. 

Musk said he started SpaceX company to get humanity to Mars. His company sent 4 civilians (not professional astronauts) into space. 

As I said before, he is an interesting guy. He named one of his kids 

 "X AE A-XII" 

I have no idea what is the meaning of this. He says X is the first name, AE A-XII is the middle name and Musk is the surname. (A few years ago an American professional basketball player changed his name to World B. Free.  At that time I thought it was bizarre.  Now I think it is ok after hearing Elon's kid's name.)

Elon Musk is a nightmare to work for. He is very ambitious and puts bizarre restrictions on his employees. For Example (some of them): No employee discount when purchasing Tesla car. No Acronyms or Workplace Jargon Allowed. No perfume or cologne allowed when they meet him. It goes on and on. 

Tesla Motors has no advertising budget. 

World Food Program published a notification that $6 billion would save the world from hunger. Musk challenged that statement and asked them to prove their statement. If they can prove, he said he will send $6 billion from his personal funds. World Food Program is yet to reply.

In this fight between Russia and Ukraine, Musk is a strong supporter of Ukraine. SpaceX CEO Elon Musk sent more than 5000 Starlink satellite internet terminals to Ukraine after a government official requested them. 

Musk’s latest announcement! 

He has challenged Putin to a one on one wrestling match. Stakes are Ukraine. A Kremlin official fired back and called Musk a “weakling” and “little devil.”

Friday, March 18, 2022

A New Scam

2 months ago I received a message in my WhatsApp from a Hong Kong phone number and it stated: 

“Hello Peter. I have almost finished your project and let us discuss when you have time”. 

I replied: I am not Peter. You must have got the wrong number. 

She replied: I am sorry. My secretary must have written down the wrong phone number. I will correct it. 

This must stop right now if it is legit. No. The next day she continued to message about how things are going, how is the weather in California, etc. I knew this was a scam but I wanted to play in her own game. I replied in a friendly manner. After 2 or 3 messages back and forth, she asked me if I am interested to buy cryptocurrency. I said I am very poor and I do not have money even to buy my food. The message from her stopped. 

In the past 2 months I received 3 more WhatsApp messages bearing Chinese female names asking me how I am doing, I replied fine and you have the wrong number. Same message again – My secretary must have written down the wrong phone number. These 3 times I said I am very poor and can she loan me some money to buy food for my starving children. 

She/they think they are intelligent. Don’t they realize they are contacting the same number with the same modus operandi – my secretary must have written down the wrong phone number. 

Day before yesterday, I got a message. I reproduce the conversation below: 

[10:51 AM, 3/16/2022] +1 (470) 499-4964: Long time no see. How are you? 

[10:51 AM, 3/16/2022] Rajan: I am fine. Can you introduce yourself please? 

[10:52 AM, 3/16/2022] +1 (470) 499-4964: I'm Lin Ziqi, don't you know me? Amir, what else do I need to introduce? 

[10:53 AM, 3/16/2022] Rajan: I am not Amir. You must have the wrong person 

[10:54 AM, 3/16/2022] +1 (470) 499-4964: Ahh it's embarrassing 

[10:54 AM, 3/16/2022] +1 (470) 499-4964: Sorry, I may have added the wrong person, maybe my new assistant did a good job, maybe she saved the wrong number, hope you don't mind 

[10:55 AM, 3/16/2022] Rajan: It is ok. But I want to tell you I am not interested in crypto currencies. 

No more messages from her.

Saturday, March 12, 2022

Volodymyr Zelenskyy

Volodymyr Zelenskyy is the President of now embattled Ukraine. (2 y at the end of his name is not a spelling mistake. That is how his name spells) His becoming President of Ukraine will something happen only in movies. Actually, he was a full-time comedy actor.  The Tamil speaking readers will certainly remember Vadivelu.*

Zelenskyy produced a TV series called Servant of the People in which he played the role of a President of Ukraine. His show was very popular and therefore he started a political party and announced his candidacy for the President of Ukraine. He scored a landslide victory.

To the surprise of many, this comedian started to bring about lot of changes and improvements to his country. He became very popular with the Ukrainian people. 

Putin always had an eye on Ukraine. He wanted to annex Ukraine and thought this was the right time to send his army to take over Ukraine. Western experts think that Putin wants to bring back the old Soviet Union. Russia thought Zelenskyy would run away from the country. However, he stood firm and leading his country courageously. 

USA offered an escape route for him from Ukraine. He immediately rejected the notion and demonstrated selfless leadership and a portrait of courage generally reserved for Hollywood (per Yahoo News). 

Ukraine claims 3 assassination attempts on him were thwarted in the last 2 weeks. 

Russia thought this would be an easy take over. But Zelenskyy and his army and people volunteers are fighting bravely. USA and EU nations are helping Ukraine. They have imposed severe economic and financial sanctions on Russia and Putin personally. 

Will see how the war ends. 

Slava Ukraini (Glory to Ukraine)

* As I write this, I read in papers Mr. Bhagwant Singh Mann, AAP Party's Punjab Chief Minister Elect was also a comedian.

Looks like Vadivelu is the only comedian who did not succeed in politics.

Monday, March 7, 2022

To Laugh or not to Laugh

North Korea banned laughing by its citizens for 11 days to mark death anniversary of Kim Jong Un’s father. During this period, they are not allowed to laugh, consume alcohol, and engage in leisure activities. 

Kim Jong Un cannot monitor the entire population whether they laugh or not. But he can, at least, check on his ministers and military generals if they laugh or not. 

I was thinking how to help Kim Jong Un in this matter. I found a solution. 

(There was a TV series in USA titled Make Me Laugh. It was a comedy game show in which the object was not to laugh at the comedians. Various comedians would have one minute each to make the contestant laugh. If the contestant was able to keep a straight face, he or she would win prize money and go on to face another comedian, and so on until at last they met a joke they couldn’t resist.) 

Taking a clue from the above TV series, Kim Jong Un can hire a few comedians and ask them to tell jokes to his ministers and military generals. If they keep a straight face and don’t laugh, they can be promoted to higher rank and their lives will be spared. Or give some awards like North Korea Unlaugh Medal.

What will happen if any of these ministers or military generals could not keep a straight face and laugh?  There is always the usual punishments like execution with anti-aircraft gun or feeding them to starving dogs. 

I am not making up these punishments. They are already published news items. I mean the punishments.

PS: A dear friend of mine suggested for North Korea to put up following signs all over the country:


Tuesday, March 1, 2022

State of the Union

State of the Union is an address by the U.S. President, usually once a year, giving the administration’s view of the state of the nation and future plans. 

President Biden gave his State of the Union today to the joint session of Congress. 

He is not an electrifying speaker like President John F. Kennedy. 

He is not a great orator like President Ronald Reagan. 

Biden’s speech was mundane. 

He began his speech with a strong support for Ukraine and calling Putin as an aggressor. He announced US will close their air space to Russian aircrafts. 

Biden said the U.S. plans to release 30 million barrels of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve as part of a global effort to protect consumers and businesses from rising fuel prices as the U.S. and allies target Russia's economy. (Credit: Teaganne Finn of NBC News) 

He asked both parties to work together and contain the pandemic virus and reopen businesses and schools. 

He talked about southern border and immigration problem. 

Biden asked the Senate to pass the voting rights bill. 

He plans to focus heavily on the economy and inflation. 

Biden never said anything about the confusing withdrawal from Afghanistan. 

Iowa’s  Republican Governor Kim Reynolds will give the Republican rebuttal to Biden’s speech. 

I wanted to write this long long time ago. Now is the opportunity. Whenever the US President address the nation equal opportunity is given to the opposition party to reply (rebut) him/her. All TV and radio broadcasting stations must carry that live by law. 

Why don’t other countries follow that? For example, when an Indian Prime Minister address the nation, why not give an equal opportunity to any of the opposition leader to speak or rebut.